The City of Orlando wants to buy six neglected west side apartment complexes to redevelop the area into mixed-income, affordable housing.
The $700,000 purchase, which is scheduled for a vote at Monday’s city council meeting, is part of a bankruptcy procedure against owners First One Hundred LLC, which racked up $876,100 in code enforcement violations during the past 12 years and still owes the city $300,000. The city would also have to pay off creditors, who are owed more than $526,000.
City staff has recommended the purchase to “encourage quality redevelopment and help stabilize the surrounding neighborhoods.” The deal allows the city to take control of the properties, without incurring the expense, delay and risks of initiating a state court foreclosure lawsuit, including the challenge of attempting to remedy title issues, according to city documents.
The Savoy is only one of the six complexes that has residents. The city will assume its six leases, according to the agreement. The remaining 104 units in the First One Hundred properties have been vacant, boarded up and unrented for nearly two decades due to a lack of maintenance and repairs.
Colonial Manor I and II, Lakeview Apartments I and II, the Savoy and Bunche Manor Apartments all sit in a row on Orange Center Boulevard, across the street from the demolished Washington Shores complex, which the nonprofit LIFT Orlando is redeveloping into the 200-unit Pendana at West Lakes.
The city has declared the area blighted and crime ridden and the move will pave the way for the mixed income, affordable housing at Pendana to be rented, when it opens in April 2018.
“I like multi-family and moderate income families but not low-income,” said Tracy Anderson, a retired Disney employee who lives nearby. “I would like the people to have the same values as we have in Lake Sunset/Luola Terrace.”
Lake Sunset is a neighborhood of ranch-style homes and 80 percent of the residents are original homeowners, she said
First One Hundred failed to secure support for a reorganization plan and the creditor holding a first mortgage on the properties filed a liquidating plan of reorganization, which was confirmed by the bankruptcy court.
The plan proposes the transfer of title to the city, free of all liens and claims for $700,000 plus an estimated $7,500 on closing costs and title insurance. The proceeds will be distributed first to creditors, including about $320,000 in unpaid taxes to Orange County, a first mortgage lien of $335,485 plus interest, which will be paid at a discounted rate of approximately $200,000 and a $6,000 Florida Department of Revenue tax lien.